Press release

American Kidney Fund Launches Campaign to Engage Communities of Color to Participate in Kidney Disease Clinical Trials

The American Kidney Fund (AKF) today launched recently enhanced materials in its diversity in clinical trials patient education campaign to equip people of color, who are routinely underrepresented in clinical trials, with accessible information to increase understanding of, and participation in, clinical trials.

ROCKVILLE, Md. (February 15, 2022) — The American Kidney Fund (AKF) today launched recently enhanced materials in its diversity in clinical trials patient education campaign to equip people of color, who are routinely underrepresented in clinical trials, with accessible information to increase understanding of, and participation in, clinical trials. The campaign engages communities of color with practical tools about the clinical trial process and how participation can benefit their health, while advancing treatments for patients in the future. AKF's campaign has been developed with grant support from GSK.

Black, Hispanic, Native American and Asian American people are consistently underrepresented in clinical trials. People of color currently make up less than 16% of clinical trial participants, despite representing 39% of the U.S. population. Multiple barriers exist that have contributed to a lack of diversity in clinical trials, including lack of trust based on past historical abuses, language and cultural differences, health literacy, religion and a lack of awareness and knowledge about what clinical trials are and what it means to participate in one.

"Racial bias among health care practitioners also unfortunately plays a role in the lack of diversity in clinical trials. In many cases, people of color would be willing to participate in a clinical trial if only it were recommended to them by their provider," said LaVarne A. Burton, AKF President and CEO. "We hope that by shining a light on these systemic issues, and equipping communities of color with information about clinical trials and how to engage with their care team, we can improve representation and ensure new therapies work for the people who need them the most."

AKF's campaign includes new information to help patients in their decision-making process of participating in a clinical trial, as well as a new webpage focused on the importance of clinical trial participation by people of color. Among the new educational resources are an interactive quiz on the myths and facts of clinical trials and a downloadable guide on key considerations for finding and evaluating patients' clinical trial participation, including talking with their doctor, using AKF's online kidney disease clinical trial search tool or exploring the U.S. government's online database.

About the American Kidney Fund

The American Kidney Fund (AKF) fights kidney disease on all fronts as the nation’s leading kidney nonprofit. AKF works on behalf of the 37 million Americans living with kidney disease, and the millions more at risk, with an unmatched scope of programs that support people wherever they are in their fight against kidney disease—from prevention through transplant. With programs that address early detection, disease management, financial assistance, clinical research, innovation and advocacy, no kidney organization impacts more lives than AKF. One of the nation’s top-rated nonprofits, AKF invests 97 cents of every donated dollar in programs, earning the highest 4-Star rating from Charity Navigator for 20 years in a row as well as the Platinum Seal of Transparency from Candid, formerly GuideStar.

For more information, please visit KidneyFund.org, or connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.